Education notebook – Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

State promoting

new-courses raft

In a statewide media campaign, the Arkansas Department of Education is promoting a slate of newly approved career and workforce courses, the rigor of which will enable students to earn weighted grades on a 5.0 scale rather than a 4.0 scale for their completion.

The courses have been approved by an internal team at the department’s Division of Elementary and Secondary Education and Division of Career and Technical Education and will be available to students during the 2021-22 school year.

“Act 623 of 2019 and the leadership of the General Assembly gave [the agencies] the tools needed to collaborate on offering these courses,” said Ivy Pfeffer, deputy commissioner of the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education. “These classes will give our students more learning opportunities that are rigorous and challenging. At the same time, these classes also allow students to explore and learn about careers they may be interested in pursuing.”

The courses cover a range of topics, including newly adopted computer science and computing courses, such as cybersecurity, game design and computer programming. Other classes include civil engineering, agriculture and aerospace engineering. The courses may replace students’ math and science graduation credits.

More information is available at:

Vice principal gets

new job with state

Ross White, vice principal at Siloam Springs High School since July 2019, will become director of the state’s Division of Career and Technical Education, effective May 1, Arkansas Education Commissioner Johnny Key has announced.

Before serving as vice principal, White was the director of the high school’s career